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 > Buying a Former Rental Class C. How many of us out there?

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Racerboy76

The Twilight Zone

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Joined: 02/24/2021

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Posted: 04/04/21 09:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks! Just wanted to post an update on what we ended up doing. We took delivery of our new Motorhome a Cruise America Majestic 25a. It's a little different than the 23a in that the inside has a wrap around couch/table, the vanity is in the bathroom, the fridge is next to the range and it seems to have a bit more storage. Its been a whirl wind since we picked it up and there were a few gotchas that we ran into. Nothing major but things that needed attention none the less. (Full disclosure we did not have an full inspection done but relied out our own research to guide us on our decision.) Overall we are very happy with our purchase and our first trip was a little over 4400 miles from Central California to Norther Alabama in the span of 3 weeks with no major issues. I've included a TLDR version of what we ran into but if you like the full story read on below.

TLDR version.

Make sure to test drive at freeway speed if possible.
Driveline needed attention.
Some of the Wheels Tires were not balanced.
Gas cap made check engine light turn on.
Transmission was overfilled
Small leak in the loft vent.
Everything else was worked great!
Duct tape is your friend
All of these things happened either before we left or on the way to Alabama and we had Zero issues on the 2200 miles home.



Ok here's the full story. On the day of pickup we did a final walk through and made a note of things that we would like fixed which they agreed to do. One of the unfortunate things was that someone had backed into the passenger fender and put a small dent. We pointed this out in the photos we took when we first went to look at the RV and they agreed to fix the damage as we had already placed a deposit. All other issues were minor and were also agreed to be fixed. The RV came with new tires, a new coach battery, new brakes, a full propane tank and a full tank of gas. All in all in great condition considering its usage.

After we signed the paperwork and headed out a few things popped up during the drive home on the freeway. It was the first time I had driven it freeway speed so I wasn't sure what to expect noise wise, though it became evident to me something was off when a vibration was present at certain speeds. I had a safety inspection scheduled with a shop near my house so I made a note of it for the mechanic. Also on my ride home the check engine light came on which was a little surprising as it was had not been on before.

The safety inspection yielded nothing major, the driveline had some runout in it which was causing some of the vibration that I felt and one of the u-joints needed to be replaced, and the inner wheels/tires at the rear had not been balanced at all. Once those things were addressed it ran very smooth down the road. The gas cap ended up being the cause of the check engine light so that was an easy fix. All in all with the inspection, driveline work and a gas cap it cost about $600. Unfortunate but glad I caught it before we hit the road.

Everything in the RV functioned as it should and was going great until Arizona. We were climbing some of the steeper grades on HWY 40 and crested the hill when I looked back to see a giant cloud of smoke coming from our motorhome. I felt like I was James Bond and I had turned on our smoke screen to escape the bad guy. We quickly pulled over and found quite a bit of transmission dripping on the ground. After pulling the dog house from the cab I was able to see that some transmission fluid had been pumped through the vent at the top of the transmission and had sprayed all over the underside including the exhaust pipe. I made a few calls and was told that it is common for this transmission to push fluid through the vent if overfilled and would it would most likely not happen again. Which ended up being the case. We cleaned up everything as best we could and continued on checking the vent / top of the transmission at each stop to see if more fluid had escaped (none did). We never encountered this issue for the remainder of our trip and the trans fluid has remained at the correct level ever since.

The other issue we ran into was in Oklahoma, we got caught in the crazy weather they were having a few weeks back and the vent door for our range got blown off. I noticed it flapping while we were driving down the road and had been taping it down but forgot and we got caught in some strong winds. Luckily I was told to take duct tape an I was able to patch it up to keep any rain from getting in. Not sure why the door wouldn't stay closed, but its now on the freeway somewhere in Oklahoma.

The only other problem I had was we discovered a small leak in the loft vent when we were faced with some torrential rain. The folks at Cruise America were more than happy to cover the cost of the repair and told me to pick any shop nearby, however we were unable to find a shop that had an opening before we were going to head back on the road. I was able to get on the roof when we arrived at our final stop in Alabama and remedy the leak with a little caulking and some elbow grease.

All of these things happened on the way to Alabama and we had Zero issues on the 2200 miles home. Heck on a few legs of our journey I was able to get 12mpg. I was actually shocked at how well the motorhome ran. I do have some shocks planned as a upgrade in the near future and the wife and I are dreaming up some creative ideas to make things even more functional. We will also be upgrading the mattress as it was just too firm for my achy bones.

All and all we had a great trip, even my wife who swore she would never like being in an RV loves our motorhome and is already planning more trips. A lot of lessons learned and and glad we went the route we did and bought used. I've heard of people buying new motorhomes/trailers and having worse problems than we did. I will say that its a must to at a minimum to get a safety inspection at a shop to ensure that the mechanical aspects of the RV are sound before heading on the road. It gave us peace of mind and ensured our successful trip.

Sorry for the wall of text but I figured I'd share our story so that it may help anyone else who is looking to buy. While we did have some issues it was nothing major and I wouldn't let it scare you from looking at one of these motorhomes. Thanks to everyone in this thread for all of your information. It really helped us in our ultimate decision to go forward with our purchase.

So I raise my cup to you fine folk for this wealth of information and support. Cheers!






IAMICHABOD wrote:

Racerboy75 Welcome to the Forum and a future member of the Former Rental Owners Club!

I hope all goes well with your inspection and maybe ownership of a Former Rental.

I know that there is a lot to sift thru here but as you can see there are some very helpful members here,if there is anything that you have questions about just ask or send me a PM,I have a lot of stuff archived so I can go back and see if there is anything I can help with.

Please come on back and tell us how everything turned out. The Twilight Zone,I like that.

Again Welcome and good luck with everything!


* This post was edited 04/04/21 10:09pm by Racerboy76 *

IAMICHABOD

Sunny So Cal

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Posted: 04/05/21 02:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Racerboy76
Welcome back,Thanks for the post on your experience of buying a Former Rental and the long shake down cruise back home.The things that you encountered and the fixes that were done,that will surely help others I am sure.It is also great to here that Cruise America would pay for the repairs that were needed.

The 25A seems to be one that I haven't heard of,it sounds nice,pictures of that interior would be nice to see.What year is it?

I put a set of Bilstein Shocks on my RV and it made a big improvement to ride and control.Also if you have handling problems one of our members,Harvard,has a lot of links to help in the front alignment.

Here is just one.

As I said before,welcome back and I will put you on the list of Happy Former Rental Owners,you will be #139 [image]

* This post was edited 04/05/21 03:03pm by IAMICHABOD *


2006 TIOGA 26Q CHEVY 6.0 WORKHORSE VORTEC
Former El Monte RV Rental

Buying A Rental Class C


TwistedGray

Monterey Bay, CA

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Posted: 04/06/21 09:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Update - I believe I was wrong. You should be able to empty your gray water tank without emptying your black water tank as they're operated by two separate release valves (Majestic 19G). They have one primary tube (?) that they both connect to for the (waste) water to come out of. So yes, you can open one value without the other (duh)...I just only ever emptied the black then the gray. I was apparently seeing tunnel vision : ) so pardon any confusion, sorry.

Racerboy76

The Twilight Zone

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Posted: 04/07/21 07:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks IAMICHABOD!

Here's a couple of pictures I took when I was out working on the Motorhome today.

From cab
[image]

Bathroom
[image]

Toward Cab
[image]

Its 2 feet longer than the 23A and there's a few differences on the outside. One example is the window near the table is not as tall due to the wrap around couch. But for the most part they look the same on the outside. I looked through the link you posted and I that's some great info. I had some of the issues being pushed around by trucks so I plan on taking it in for a alignment and possibly adding in some of the camber adjusters.

IAMICHABOD

Sunny So Cal

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Posted: 04/08/21 12:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Racerboy76,thanks for the nice pictures.WOW I like that configuration with the wraparound couch and table and nicer things like the vanity in the bathroom,that seems to give more storage and the fridge where it is makes more sense.

It looks like a much better floor plan that I have not seen before as a rental,it looks like a non commercial Thor Chateau 22E, and I don't see any on their website. What Year is it? Maybe this is their newest ones to go on the rental market,I may have to go to the lot near me and check them out.

Again thanks for the pictures and I hope the other members enjoy them too. Have fun this Camping Season!

* This post was last edited 04/08/21 02:07pm by IAMICHABOD *   View edit history

rjm522

Georgia

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Posted: 04/18/21 10:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My first post after much lurking here.

This post is a great resource, thank you to everyone that has posted. I have read all 152 pages off and on over the span of the last week or so. I was on the fence about purchasing a former CA rental, but these pages have pushed me over the edge. The plan is to purchase a 28A in June or July. We will be going to the Kissimmee Florida CA location mid June to look at their inventory. I have 3 questions I would like input on from the group. #1 - which location does a better job on the refurbishment of their rental units before the sale, the Mesa Arizona location or the Kissimmee Florida location? #2 - financing a used class C with over 100K....where have you folks gotten your financing from? #3 - how much does CA charge for an awning?

TIA for your input.

eldel

Northern Colorado

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Posted: 04/18/21 10:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I thought all the refurbs were done in AZ now. Did they restart in FL? I know at one point last year they were delivering from AZ to everywhere. I doubt that there's a significant difference in output. The difference is probably between the secondary outlets where they may, or may not, be willing to deal with minor items.
HELOC (if available) is probably the best bet - it's a second home on your tax return. I couldn't find any sensible auto finance with >100K miles.
$980 (in Denver last year - I assume it's the same everywhere). It's "assisted manual" and make sure they demonstrate it to you before you leave. They fitted mine the wrong way up.

SJ-Chris

San Jose, Ca

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Posted: 04/18/21 02:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

rjm522 wrote:

My first post after much lurking here.

This post is a great resource, thank you to everyone that has posted. I have read all 152 pages off and on over the span of the last week or so. I was on the fence about purchasing a former CA rental, but these pages have pushed me over the edge. The plan is to purchase a 28A in June or July. We will be going to the Kissimmee Florida CA location mid June to look at their inventory. I have 3 questions I would like input on from the group. #1 - which location does a better job on the refurbishment of their rental units before the sale, the Mesa Arizona location or the Kissimmee Florida location? #2 - financing a used class C with over 100K....where have you folks gotten your financing from? #3 - how much does CA charge for an awning?

TIA for your input.


Several Credit Unions finance these type of RVs (over 100k miles). Rates are "reasonable". You can also get it financed through Cruise America (for an easier time), and then refinance it through a credit union for lower rate shortly after.


San Jose, CA
Own two 2015 Thor Majestic 28a Class C RVs

EMD360

Arvada, CO

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Posted: 04/18/21 09:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Getting ready for our maiden voyage in the new RV. So excited to get on the road. We are planning to drive 1500 miles and just stop when we get tired and need to rest. I70 E almost all the way.
So far everything has checked out on this rig. Had an oil change and general service and everything looked good. I had to clean and water the original NAPA 62 AH batteries so I hope they provide enough power for the trip.
We’ve had some cold weather but finally warmed up for me to dewinterize. Had a hard time getting bleach into the system because there are screens in the water ports. I’m going to have to figure out an easier way to do it. I tried the filter method and the hose method and spilled as much as went in. I could not figure out the hot water bypass because this rig has a waterline shut off and the bypass. Finally found the shutoff and filled the heater and tested it. The “bypass” pump makes unfamiliar noises while it runs. Not sure if it’s normal. But we have water for the trip.
Gassed up, filled propane, and tomorrow’s launch will be here soon!


2018 Minnie Winnie 25b New to us 3/2021
Former Rental Owners Club #137
2003 Itasca Spirit 22e 2009-2021


IAMICHABOD

Sunny So Cal

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Posted: 04/19/21 07:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

EMD360,it sound like you have all your bases covered.Enjoy that Maiden Trip. Will be looking forward to a report back when you can.

HAVE FUN # 137 !!!!

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